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An artist’s rendering shows the Camp Humphreys’ Army Lodge with a new wing to open in January 2008. Groundbreaking for the $12.6 million project was Tuesday.
An artist’s rendering shows the Camp Humphreys’ Army Lodge with a new wing to open in January 2008. Groundbreaking for the $12.6 million project was Tuesday. (Courtesy of U.S. Army)

PYEONGTAEK, South Korea — Camp Humphreys’ Army Lodge will almost double in size once workers finish building a new wing that is expected to open in January 2008.

The new building especially will serve needs of families who require temporary lodging while changing duty stations, officials said.

Work was to start this week on the structure, which will bring to 156 the lodge’s total number of rooms, they said.

Officials kicked off the $12.6 million project Tuesday morning with a groundbreaking ceremony at the construction site, about 50 yards from the existing lodge, in Camp Humphreys’ commercial heart near the Community Activities Center.

The existing structure stands four stories and has 80 rooms. In a major first-floor remodeling, workers will demolish nine rooms and replace them with several conference rooms, a digital business center, breakfast area and expanded facilities for housekeeping staff, said Greg Reiff, Army Corps of Engineers’ resident engineer at Camp Humphreys.

A covered walkway will connect the buildings, he said.

The new addition will be five stories high and measure 55,000 square feet. Larry Gennaccaro, Camp Humphreys Lodge manager, said it will have 85 rooms: 45 “extended-stay” guest rooms and 40 suites especially well-suited for lodging transient families.

Each extended-stay room will have a kitchenette, microwave oven, refrigerator and sink, Gennaccaro said. The existing structure’s standard rooms have microwave ovens, refrigerators and sinks, he said.

Daily rates at the lodge now are $52 for a standard room; suites are $56 and $58. No decision had been made yet on room rates in the new building, Gennaccaro said.

Yojin Industrial Company Ltd. of Seoul will carry out the work under contract with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Designer for the project is Thomas J. Davis/Jung-Il Associated, Architects, Engineers, Planners.

Under a U.S.-South Korean agreement, Camp Humphreys is to triple in size by 2008 and become the U.S. military’s main installation on the peninsula. The post’s population also will increase, including its number of officially sponsored military families, officials have said.

“And we’ll be able to accommodate them and the children in these suites, as opposed to them having to struggle in one room with maybe connecting doors but no cooking facility,” Gennaccaro said.

The new lodging also will help accommodate other guests, including groups such as the one at an official conference at Camp Humphreys this week, he said. The lodge had room for about 90 of the group but another 45 were referred to off-post hotels, he said.

“By having those two facilities like that … we’ll probably be able to accommodate them all, once that building’s open,” Gennaccaro said. “And that’ll go for any [permanent change of station] person. The chance of us turning anyone away will be very slim — and that’ll be a good thing.”

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